One step through the mesh sliding door, and I’m in a new world. One step onto the back porch, and I feel closer both physically and emotionally to clarity. My backyard is one of my favorite places to explore. There is a reassurance behind its contradiction, how the backyard is both an area of familiarity and exploration. Though my backyard is still a comfortable part of my house just steps from my living room, it’s strangely also a place that deserves more adventure.
I step out into the open, where I come across a nice patch of grass. There are shrubs and little stumps emulating the Japanese tea gardens that my mother loves (she had the backyard renovated to her liking). I’ve grown to know the pavement like the back of my hand, its uneven ridges forever imprinted from summer days dancing in the backyard. The view over the fence is beautiful, especially during the sunset.
But it’s the imperfections of my backyard that resonate most with me. For example, the apple tree and persimmon tree in the side yard that my grandfather planted from scratch have been a work in progress for almost 15 years now. The big oak tree that my parents threatened to cut down due to its size still remains, bringing the local squirrels to my backyard everyday. And then there’s the hole in the side of the fence that my dog has escaped through many times. It’s enlightening to look at these moments and notice the subtle memories that come from it.